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April 5 is National Caregiver Day

05 April 2013

The Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, in partnership with We Care Home Health Services, recognizes the dedication and devotion of all family caregivers on National Caregiver Day - April 5, 2013. A recent survey indicated that 14.9% of Canadians aged 65 years or older are living with a cognitive impairment, including dementia and Alzheimer’s. Those living with a cognitive disease like Alzheimer’s or dementia often require 24-hour care for safety reasons. This led the CHPCA to develop the theme for National Caregiver Day 2013: “Caregiving and Dementia: They go hand in hand.”

 CHPCA We Care Home Health Services, have developed an awareness campaign around National Caregiver Day. A Caregiver is an individual who provides ongoing care and assistance, without pay, for family members and friends in need of support due to physical, cognitive, or mental health conditions. Each year, April 5th is a day for family and informal caregivers – family, friends, neighbours – to be acknowledged and celebrated.

 

“Caregiving for loved ones with dementia can be a challenge for all involved, especially as it relates to end-of-life care,” says Sharon Baxter, Executive Director, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA). “Through this initiative, we hope to raise awareness around the daily challenges these caregivers face and the compassionate support they show everyday.”

 

By 2031 it is estimated that the number of Canadians living with a cognitive impairment will increase to 1.4 million.[i] With the devolution of care to the community and the home, these 1.4 million Canadians will be cared for increasingly by family caregivers.[ii]

 

We believe that all Canadians have the right to die with dignity, free of pain, surrounded by their loved ones, in a setting of their choice. It is crucial that the Canadian healthcare system have programs and services in place to provide the quality end-of-life care that Canadians need.

 

Join us for a special Online Event on National Caregiver Day hosted by Maxwell Hamlyn, RPN, ORT, UT. Our event, “Caregiving and Dementia: They go hand in hand” will take place on Friday April 5th at 1pm EDT. More information can be found at www.chpca.net/caregiverday.



[i] A new way of looking at the impact of dementia in Canada.  Alzheimer of Canada Society, 2012.

[ii] Voice in Health Policy: The Role of Informal Caregivers in Hospice Palliative Care in Canada: A Discussion of the Legal, Ethical and Moral Challenges, CHPCA, August 2004.

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